BALTOPS 2016 moves into final, tactical exercise phase

The 2016 edition of the multinational exercise BALTOPS has entered the third and final phase of serialized training operations, June 10.

The final, tactical exercise portion of the exercise, continues in-port and at-sea training events which are a culmination of combat enhancement training, and force integration training involving asymmetric and multinational sea/air forces to develop interoperability in execution of a peace enforcement mission.

One hundred five training events, with a specific start and end time, were conducted during the CET/FIT phase. During tactical exercise (TACEX), the unscripted portion of the exercise, a fictional scenario is played out in real time using specific mission areas to accomplish objectives. These mission areas include: amphibious warfare, surface warfare, anti-surface warfare, mine countermeasures, maritime interdiction operations, anti-air warfare and countering asymmetric threats.

The key events are receiving and integrating allied forces, conducting thorough preparatory training, establishing the necessary conditions for conducting realistic tactical missions, exchanging information, following safety rules, maintaining C2 and logistic support capabilities, conducting amphibious operations, and developing individual commander and staffs skills.

Fifteen NATO and two partner nations are participating in the 44th iteration of the multinational maritime exercise BALTOPS 2016 in Estonia, Finland, Germany, Poland, Sweden, and throughout the Baltic Sea, June 3-19.

“BALTOPS is the exercise that just keeps giving; it’s bigger and better each year. This year we have over 4,000 sailors and marines operating in 43 different naval ships from 17 nations; all honing their professional skills and making lasting partnerships,” said British Royal Marines Col. Garth Manger, Operations Officer for BALTOPS 2016.

Participating nations in BALTOPS 2016 include Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom, and the United States.